Tour du Piton des Neiges

This loop is an exploration of the Piton des Neiges massif, via its three cirques. This volcano, which is no longer active, was carved out and sculptured by massive erosion and a process of collapsing which formed the so-called cirques (amphitheaters) and remparts. Set in a “clover-leaf” shape around the highest summit of the island (3070 m), Mafate, Salazie and Cilaos each enjoy a different atmosphere. On the last day of the trek, we climb to the summit of the Indian Ocean to admire the island at sunrise.

- Length: 5 days/4 nights
- Difficulty: sustained
- Backpack: contains your gear for 5 days and several picnics
- Start/end points: Cilaos - public transport is available (Alternéo 60)

Rates:

Organisation and guide for this trek for 5 days:

Individual Formed group
1 pers 2 pers 3 pers 4 pers 5 pers
800 € 450 €/pers 316 €/pers 250 €/pers 210 €/pers

Rate upon request above 5 participants.

Additional costs:
- 4 nights in lodges/refuge with half-board (circa 48 €/pers/night)
- the guide’s half-board package (96 €)
- 5 picnics (8 to 10 €/pers/day)

Day by day:

CIRQUE OF CILAOS
D1 – After a short bus transfer along the road leading to Ilet à Cordes, start of our ascent to the Col du Taïbit (pass) on the crest between the Cilaos and Mafate cirques. Short but steep descent towards the hamlet of Marla.
Around 4 h walking, +800 m and -450 m
Dinner and night in a lodge in Marla.

CIRQUE OF MAFATE
Inhabited heart of Reunion Island National Park, Mafate is the only one of the three cirques where there are no roads, which gives it a distinctive aura... No less than 200 km of hiking trails run across it; a dream for passionned hikers!

D2 – Hike in the heart of the cirque towards the hamlet of La Nouvelle, via the Trois Roches waterfall, where we can chill out with feet in the fresh water! Stunning views of the rempart and eroded landscapes.
Around 4-5 h walking, +400 m and -550 m
Dinner and night in a lodge in La Nouvelle.

CIRQUE OF SALAZIE
D3 – In the morning, ascent of the Col de Fourche (pass) on the crest that separates us from the Cirque of Salazie. Crossing of the mysterious Plaine des Tamarins and the Cirque of Salazie, through forests of “bois de couleurs”, filao trees, cattley guavas... We reach Hell Bourg via the ancient thermal baths, that have led to Hell Bourg’s “belle époque”.
Around 8h30 walking, +920 m and -1420 m
Dinner and night in a lodge in Hell Bourg.

D4 – Early morning, visit of the village before our steep ascent to the Piton des Neiges refuge, through the different types of vegetation: exploited cryptomeria forest, “bois de couleurs des Hauts”, then altitude shrubs.
Around 5-6 h walking, +1550 m
Dinner and night at the Piton des Neiges refuge.

PITON DES NEIGES – CILAOS
D5 – Before sunrise, we climb with head torches to the summit of the Piton des Neiges (3070 m), highest peak of the Indian Ocean. When the sky is clear, we can admire the Cilaos and Salazie cirques until the ocean, and the volcano in the far distance looking south-east. Descent to the refuge then back to Cilaos down the rempart.
Around 6-7 h walking, +600 m and -1870 m (light pack for the summit ascent)

Alizés Montagnes - Ile de la Réunion : trek, randonnée, trekking sur mesure avec un accompagnateur en montagne. Randonnées sur l’île de la Réunion, découverte des cirques de Cilaos, Mafate, Salazie, du Piton des Neiges, du Piton de la Fournaise, des forêts tropicales... Alizés Montagnes - Reunion Island : trek, hiking, customised trekking with a mountain guide. Walks on Reunion Island, exploration of the cirques of Cilaos, Mafate, Salazie, the Piton des Neiges, the Piton de la Fournaise, the rain forests...